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Opposition lawmaker St. Clair Leacock in an October 2023 photo.
Opposition lawmaker St. Clair Leacock in an October 2023 photo.
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A senior opposition politician in St. Vincent and the Grenadines on Wednesday opted for “simple terms” to communicate his party’s position on the Venezuela-Guyana border conflict.

“Leave the Guyanese people alone. Leave them alone,” St. Clair Leacock, a vice president of the New Democratic Party said on the party’s programme on NICE Radio.

“I put it in simple terms, I ain’t going for no highfalutin ‘the treaty of this and the treaty of that; international law this and international law of the other’. When there is a time for me to apply those kinds of sophisticated kind of reasoned arguments, I’ll go there. But for no plain straight talk, dutty (dirty) manners,” said Leacock, who is MP for Central Kingstown.

On Monday, NDP President and Opposition Leader Godwin Friday, speaking on the same programme, said the conflict is “a very serious regional problem” that cannot be taken lightly.

Leacock criticised Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves for what he suggested was an unwillingness to take a decisive stance on the century-old conflict, in which Venezuela is claiming two-thirds of Guyana’s landmass.

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“He went here, there and everywhere all over the world telling everybody what to do and how to mind their business. But now we have right in our CARICOM region a member state of CARICOM …” Leacock said of Gonsalves.

He noted that Guyana, which over the last few years has discovered large deposits of oil in its territory, has the fastest growing economy in CARICOM.

“… one that is going by 30 something percent,” Leacock said, adding that the second-place country in the Caribbean for growth hasn’t reached 10% economic growth in a year.

“Guyana is the capital of CARICOM. Guyana has been a part of us not just historically but in all of us, in many dimensions,” Leacock said and mentioned past and current Guyanese cricketing greats.

“They have always been a CARICOM country,” Leacock said, referring to the South American nation that is Caribbean in its culture and history.

He continued with his criticism of Gonsalves, saying:

“Even him with his lickrishness (greedy) run down to Guyana to borrow money from one the bank because anywhere he see a bank, he see money and he see trust (credit) and to bring the board houses them here to St. Vincent and the Grenadines, to take another loan. But now he in a bind.  Even though he aint have no more oil money to get from Venezuela, he can’t tell Venezuela they’re playing the arse, that’s stupidness, that’s dotishness.

“He can’t decide that this is a CARICOM position. You’re dancing around the place because you want to get from both houses. You want chook one hand in Guyana and another one — but the Guyanese ain’t foolish.”

Leacock said that the Vincentian people support Guyana “genuinely and proudly.

“Guyanese suffered enough throughout the whole Caribbean when things had turned sour with them. And now they are pulling themselves around, it not hedging and hawing,” he said.

“Major, New Democratic Party, Friday and company support the proud people of Guyana in this dispute,” Leacock said, referring to himself by his nickname, which is also his military rank.

“And Venezuela must take their hand off the Essequibo region. They ain’t managing what they have now, what they want to go and mismanage more?” Leacock said.

“Their people all over the world looking for refuge — all over the world. I’m saying that we must stand unhesitatingly behind the Guyanese people in this dispute, and allow the people to rebuild and modernise their country in a way that can make the Guyanese people proud.”

Leacock said he trained with the Guyana Defence Force many years ago.

“As I said last week, pretty rough and hard-feting people; hard-working people; fun people.” 

One reply on “‘Leave the Guyanese people alone,’ Leacock tells Venezuela”

  1. Is Leacock deliberately empowering our PM? He utters these things and I just read that the Guyanese pm and the Venezuela leader are meeting in Vincy. When you make certain utterances Mr Leacock , it actually works in the best interest of the leader you’re trying to get rid of. It gives him time to reboot. We have a lot of issues locally you could be highlighting to the people. Your objective is to win over the Vincentian populace by highlighting the issues of high unemployment, poverty and the out of control crime / murder situation.We want tangible solutions. I get the impression the members of the opposition are quite comfortable in their positions. 22 yrs can do that.Soon you’ll be wearing pampers as opposition members at the rate you’re going and there’s no stopping you who seem to be hell bent on remaining in opposition.

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